While black fungus is marketed under several names, it’s technically different than the wood ear mushroom (Auricularia auricula-judae), its botanical cousin. Nonetheless, these fungi boast similar nutrient profiles and culinary uses and are sometimes referred to interchangeably.
Black fungus is a popular ingredient in Malaysian, Chinese, and Maori cuisine.
It’s a bit coarser than the wood ear mushroom and frequently used in soups. As it has a fairly neutral taste, it’s even added to Cantonese desserts. Like tofu, it absorbs the flavors of the dish it’s a part of.
Since the 19th century, black fungus has been used in traditional Chinese medicine to alleviate symptoms of several conditions, including jaundice and sore throats
Despite the multiple uses of black fungus in traditional Chinese medicine, scientific research on it is still in the beginning stages.
All the same, this mushroom has been noted for its potential immune-enhancing and antimicrobial properties
Emerging research indicates that black fungus offers many benefits, such as protecting your liver, lowering cholesterol, and boosting gut health. It’s also packed with fibre and antioxidants.